Trump unpresidential? Thank God

By Burt Prelutsky On 12/12/2016

The other night, I heard what might be the greatest political speech of my life. It was Donald Trump, in Cincinnati, thanking Ohio voters for helping him win the election.

It lasted nearly an hour and didn’t lag for even a minute. It was at times inspirational, as when Trump spoke of a united nation going forward; aspirational, as when he spoke of his hopes and dreams for this nation; and at times even funny, as when he teased his staff and scooped the media by announcing days ahead of schedule that he was appointing Marine Gen. James “Mad Dog” Mattis (retired) to be his secretary of defense.

In the aftermath, I heard some of the goonier pundits taking Trump to task for not sounding presidential. Perhaps that’s why I was able to stay awake to the very end, which isn’t generally the case when a politician speaks for more than five minutes at a time.

One of the things that made me appreciate Trump even more than I already did is that he paid attention to the people on stage sitting behind him. Most politicians treat them like wallpaper, but Trump kept turning around to acknowledge their presence and show his appreciation of their continued support.

I also couldn’t help noticing how different those people looked from the ones who serve as props for people like Obama, Sanders and Mrs. Clinton. Whereas the Democrats only clap when their candidates talk about all the goodies the federal government intended to bestow on them, Trump’s people broke out in applause every time he mentioned bringing back jobs from other countries or keeping those we still have from leaving. It clearly illustrated the chasm that exists between those who take and those who make, or, if you prefer, shirkers and workers.

The next thing that occurred to me was to wonder what the pundits meant when they declared from their perch on Mount Olympus that Trump wasn’t acting presidential. Just who in the hell did they have in mind? Bill Clinton, who not only engaged in perjury but introduced oral sex to the Oval Office? George Bush, who never stopped lecturing us about the wonders of Islam, even as its adherents were butchering Christians and Jews all over the world? Or perhaps they were referring to Barack Obama, who regularly displayed his contempt for the Constitution, law enforcement and those millions of decent Americans who insisted on clinging to their guns and their religion.

There was even criticism of Trump’s success in persuading Carrier not to move 1,100 jobs from Indiana to Mexico. For the most part, those doing the critiquing based their disapproval on the fact that the president-elect was providing the company with certain tax benefits in exchange for their cooperation. They claimed it didn’t comport with Republican principles that favored non-intervention by the government. In an age of globalism, where foreign governments manipulate their currency to take advantage of America, they naively argued for unrestricted free trade.

Well, for one thing, that ship sailed a long time ago. Once tariffs, trade deals negotiated by federal bureaucrats and government subsidies, otherwise known as corporate welfare, came along, it was sheer folly to talk about free markets and untethered capitalism.

It could be said that by employing carrots along with sticks that Trump wasn’t strictly adhering to Republican principles. But inasmuch as 1,100 Indiana families will still be able to put Christmas dinner on the table and some gifts for the kids under the tree in a couple weeks, I think it’s those questionable principles, and not Donald Trump, the master of the deal, that should be questioned.

Speaking of Obama, there are certain accepted truths that guide us all, including the speed of light, the distance to the moon and the fact that” i” precedes “e” except after “c.” However, a great many people persist in placing a couple of hoaxes in that same category. I refer to the liberals’ childish belief in something called either “global warming” or “climate change,” depending on the time of day, and the cockeyed notion that Barack Obama is a great orator.

Ignoring the drivel that inevitably escapes his lips, a great speaker should not be judged by the words he reads from a teleprompter, words written by someone like me, but by the way he handles the language when deprived of a speechwriter. We have spent more than eight years listening to him sputter like an old jalopy on its last legs whenever he is required to respond to a question he hasn’t been fed in advance, and yet the legend of his eloquence continues unabated.

I recently took the federal employees, including Lois Lerner, Cheryl Mills and Huma Abedin, to task for utilizing the Fifth Amendment when questioned about the targeting of conservative groups by the IRS and Hillary Clinton’s illegal use of a private server. In most of the cases, those being questioned had already been granted immunity, so how on earth is it they were allowed to take the Fifth, protecting themselves against self-incrimination? I call it the belt-and-suspenders defense, and I think that they, along with FBI Director James Comey, who allowed them to get away with it, should be doing serious time in Leavenworth on the grounds that they engaged in a criminal conspiracy.

Although I have been elated by Donald Trump’s Cabinet choices, and would, as a result, be inclined to give him the benefit of the doubt, I would be extremely disappointed if he selects Mitt Romney to serve as his secretary of state.

Understand, I very much wanted Gov. Romney to defeat Obama in the 2012 election. But that was then, and this is now. It’s not just the nasty things Romney said about Trump during the campaign, either, remarks which indicated that he very much preferred to see Hillary Clinton elected, but by logical extension the nasty things he was saying about those of us who supported Mr. Trump.

After all, if Trump was not only a “phony” and a “fraud,” whose “promises are as worthless as a degree from Trump University,” but constituted “a threat to American democracy,” what did that say about the 65 million of us who couldn’t wait to vote for the man? Romney went on to answer that question when he concluded by saying: “Trump is playing members of the American public for suckers.”

I may well be a sucker, but I’d still prefer to see Rudy Giuliani representing America on the world stage than a schmuck who either backed Mrs. Clinton or squandered his vote on Evan McMullin for no other reason than that he was a fellow Mormon.

In a fitting conclusion to a miraculous election, Rep. Luis Gutierrez, D-Ill., has announced he will be boycotting the inauguration because Trump “spews hatred, bigotry and prejudice.” Any inauguration that Senor Gutierrez boycotts is one I’d love to attend.

Considering that the race card-playing Gutierrez champions identity politics, and inevitably compares conservatives to vermin, I’d say there are few members of Congress who know more about hatred, bigotry and prejudice than the smug little racist from Illinois.

Finally, France, in keeping with its proud anti-Semitic, pro-fascistic, traditions, will no longer allow products from Israel’s suburbs to be labeled “Made in Israel.” Henceforth, they will have to be labeled “Made in an Israeli settlement.”

In retaliation, I suggest that Israel and the U.S. should insist that from now on, French imports be labeled “Made in what is still Vichy France.”